Future Homes Standard: What to expect

New build housing estate

Future Homes Standard: What to expect

Published May 2024

The Future Homes Standard (FHS) is due to come into force in 2025 and will build on the latest uplifts to energy efficiency standards for new homes. Homes built from 2025 will need to produce 75-80% less carbon emissions than those built under 2013 regulations. 

At the time of writing (May 2024) the FHS is under consultation, so information may change. Here’s what housebuilders can expect, based on the conversation so far…

The FHS aims to create new homes that: 

  • Have high standards for fabric and energy efficiency 

  • Use low-carbon heating technologies 

  • Are ‘zero-carbon ready’

New build housing estate

New notional home 

The FHS proposes two options for the new notional home specification: 

Option 1 

The most cost-effective option to maximise carbon savings, balanced against reducing energy bills for households. Cost-effective at reducing carbon overall but comes with additional upfront costs for developers.1 


  • Solar PV panels 

  • Wastewater heat recovery system 

  • Increased airtightness 

  • Decentralised mechanical ventilation system 

solar panels
Heat Source Technologies

Option 2: 

The minimal approach to achieve ‘zero-carbon ready’ homes that deliver at least 75% carbon savings compared to 2013 requirements. More expensive to run than Option 1 but still delivers expected bill savings for households moving from a typical home.1 

It has been proposed that low and zero carbon technologies, like heat pumps, are made mandatory for homes built after 2025. 


The latest updates to Approved Document L introduced tighter U-values and these are likely to remain the same with the introduction of the FHS. 

Limiting U-values for new fabric elements in new dwellings: 

Building element  

Maximum U-value (W/m2K) 







Party wall 


Source: Approved Document L. View the full Limiting U-values table here.  


Did you know? A survey of housebuilders suggests 150mm cavities are becoming the new industry norm with 41% of participants already having made the switch and just over a quarter considering it.

Home Energy Model  

The FHS proposes to replace the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) with a new Home Energy Model, to rate the energy efficiency of new homes and demonstrate compliance with the FHS. 

The Home Energy Model is also currently under consultation. 

In-use performance testing 

The FHS recognises the industry’s performance gap between how homes are designed to perform and how they perform in reality. It’s proposed that from 2026, housebuilders who performance test their homes post-occupancy be recognised with a FHS ‘brand’. 

Although still under review, it is expected that Smart Meter Enabled Thermal Efficiency Rating technology could be the preferred method for testing. A good example of this is Knauf Energy Solutions’ sensor technology

knauf energy solutions sensor
Calendar missed deadline

Transition period  

The consultation is reviewing options for a six-month or twelve-month period between laying the FHS regulations, with full technical specification, and the regulations coming into force.  

In either case, this would be followed by a twelve-month transitional period, applying to individual buildings on a site, in the same way as the previous transitional arrangements for Part L.